nep-hme New Economics Papers
on Heterodox Microeconomics
Issue of 2016‒04‒04
fourteen papers chosen by
Carlo D’Ippoliti
Università degli Studi di Roma “La Sapienza”

  1. Recession, austerity and gender - a comparison of eight european labour markets By Hélène Perivier;
  2. Capital, growth and inequality in Piketty's approach. Is it able to explain level and changes of inequality in the personal income distribution? By Renata Targetti Lenti
  3. Sectoral FDI and Economic Growth — Evidence from Egyptian Governorates By Shima'a Hanafy
  4. How can imitation counterbalance innovation? An ABM Bass model for competing products By Philippe Collard; Wilfried Segretier
  5. Green Microfinance and Ecosystem Services - A quantitative study on outcomes and effectiveness By Davide Forcella; Frédéric Huybrechs
  6. An Input-Output Model of the U.S. Economy with Pollution Externality By Nicholas Z. Muller
  7. A Critical Overview of Islamic Economics from a Welfare-State Perspective By Soldatos, Gerasimos T.
  8. What do you want to be when you grow up? Local institutional quality and the choice of the fields of study in Italy (2004-2007) By Nifo, Annamaria; Scalera, Domenico; Vecchione, Gaetano
  9. Wage and Price Setting in Macedonia: Evidence from Survey Data By Gani Ramadani; Nikola Naumovski
  10. The multivariate nature of systemic risk: direct and common exposures By Paolo Giudici; Peter Sarlin; Alessandro Spelta
  11. The Road to Socioeconomic Fractality By George Mengov
  12. The Foreign Policy of a Democratic Socialist Regime: From Intervention to Protection to Warfare By Makovi, Michael
  13. Cadenas globales de valor y generación de valor añadido: El caso de la economía española By Marta Solaz Alamá
  14. Gender differences in climate change perceptions and adaptation strategies: an intra-household analysis from rural Kenya By Ngigi, Marther W.; Mueller, Ulrike; Birner, Regina

  1. By: Hélène Perivier (OFCE Sciences Po);
    Abstract: The GDP collapse phase of the economic crisis has less affected female employment than male employment, whereas the austerity phase was particularly harsh for women. This gendered impact of the different stages of the crisis is described in the literature as follows: from she-cession to sh(e)austerity . This article aims to analyse the gendered trends in labour market for eight European countries. The quarterly evolution of the participation of women and men and the employment at the sectorial level are decomposed. The she-cession to sh(e)austerity scenario does not apply to all the selected countries. The other channels through which austerity policies can jeopardize gender equality and women’s rights are identified by referring to a typology of these policies.
    Keywords: gender,Recession,Austerity,Segregation, Economic policies, Employment
    JEL: J16 J21 J22
    Date: 2016–02
  2. By: Renata Targetti Lenti
    Abstract: The paper is a critical review of Piketty’s book “Capital in the XXI Century”. The book provides a general theory of the functioning of a capitalist economy. Piketty’s intent is to link the functional and personal income distribution to the economic growth. The setting can be called "classic". However Piketty is not interested in explaining the role of capital accumulation on economic growth, but instead the inverse relation, that is the role of economic growth on the increase of the returns to capital, on the concentration of wealth and of income’s inequality in capitalist economies. In this review Piketty’s framework is discussed arguing that it can explain only partially level and changes of the personal income distribution. The factors which explain the dynamic of wealth (accumulation of capital) are different from those which explain the dynamics of labor income (demand and supply of skills and education, technology). It is very difficult, therefore, to reach a consensus on a shared theory of personal income distribution. Piketty links in a very innovative way the returns from capital r to the rate of growth of national income g comparing them in a macroeconomic framework. He claims that when returns on capital rise more quickly than the overall economy and taxes on capital remain low, a vicious circle of ever-growing dynastic wealth, and growing inequality, takes place. However the fact that r exceeds g explains nothing about the rise in inequality. An analysis of the generation of personal incomes, and consequently of inequality, requires a suitable framework that links personal endowments to incomes. At the end I will indicate some steps that could be required by framework suitable to analyze the personal income generation process.
    Keywords: Capitalism, Inequality, Income Distribution
    JEL: P16 P48 D31
  3. By: Shima'a Hanafy (University of Marburg)
    Abstract: This paper investigates the effect of sectoral foreign direct investment (FDI) on economic growth in Egypt, using a novel panel dataset of 26 Egyptian governorates for the period 1992–2007. The growth literature is robust with the benefits of using a within-country dataset for such a research question (Ford et al., 2008). Despite the large number of theoretical models on the channels through which FDI can enhance economic growth, empirical findings are still inconclusive. We argue that one possible reason for the ambiguous effect is the use of aggregate FDI data across different sectors. Our results show no significant effect of aggregate FDI stock on economic growth in Egyptian governorates, which can be partly explained by the contradictory growth effects of FDI at the sectoral level. We find a positive effect of manufacturing FDI, a negative effect of agricultural FDI and no significant effect of services FDI on economic growth.
    Keywords: Foreign direct investment; sectoral FDI; economic growth; Egypt
    JEL: B59 C61 D21 D69
    Date: 2015
  4. By: Philippe Collard (I3S - Laboratoire d'Informatique, Signaux, et Systèmes de Sophia Antipolis - UNS - Université Nice Sophia Antipolis - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique); Wilfried Segretier (IDC - LAMIA - Laboratoire de Mathématiques Informatique et Applications - UAG - Université des Antilles et de la Guyane)
    Abstract: The general context of this paper is the Bass model which presented a theory of the adoption of new products. We propose an agent based modelling to allow to model the respective grow of competing products. We assume that there is competition for the same market among two trademarks: each one has its own rate of spontaneous innovation and its own rate of imitation. This paper deals with the relative weight of these competing behaviors on the global dynamics; in particular, we ask the question of the equivalence between mass media influence and word-of-mouth effect.
    Keywords: Agent based modelling, Bass model, Marketing, Competing products
    Date: 2014–05–28
  5. By: Davide Forcella; Frédéric Huybrechs
    Abstract: There has been growing interest lately in the role of microfinance to support environmental management of micro-enterprises and poor households. Worldwide, the number of green microfinance projects increases, yet there seems to be little discussion on how effective green microfinance is in achieving its environmental goals. This paper aims to position itself in this debate. We look at the first large-scale green microfinance programme for biodiversity conservation: Proyecto CAMBio. It consists of a combination of credits, technical assistance and conditional payments for environmentally friendly agricultural activities (PES). We focus on its implementation in Nicaragua by the microfinance institution FDL and the NGO Nitlapan. We perform an in-depth econometric analysis of a survey we conducted on a sample of 128 rural producers. We assess the clients’ characteristics that influenced the evolution of the environmental value of their farm –as defined by the indicators we used– on a span of five years, and we assess Proyecto CAMBio’s possible role in this evolution. Moreover, we further look into the effectiveness of PES in rewarding environmental betterment. Factors such as the decision to change the main economic activities, or clients’ strategies or opportunities in land accumulationappear to have the strongest influence on the evolution of the environmental value of the clients’ farm. While the project per se, even if carefully implemented in agreement with its guidelines and well performing at financial level, does not appear to have significantly influenced the evolution of the environmental value of the clients’ farm. Moreover, the PES does not seem to reward environmental improvement while instead it rewards the more credit-worthy activities, producers with more access to land and credit and in addition producers that plant fewer trees per hectare. With these results, we underline the importance of the local territorial dynamics and the complexity of the socio-environmental systems against a vision based simply on single economic actors. From our results it appears that green microfinance, without strategic articulation with local actors and broader territorial dynamics, would tend to (indirectly) support preexisting socioeconomic structures and the possibly related environmental degradation processes. We hence call for a more proactive engagement of green microfinance in the territorial dynamics and with local actors with the aim to support more sustainable livelihood trajectories and development pathways.
    Keywords: Microfinance; Green Microfinance; Rural Development; Payments for Environmental Services; Agricultural Finance; Ecosystem Services; Biodiversity; Central America; Proyecto CAMBio; Quantitative Analysis
    JEL: Q57 Q01 Q12 Q14 Q15 Q23 O13 G21 C01
    Date: 2016–03–16
  6. By: Nicholas Z. Muller
    Abstract: Input-output (I-O) analysis represents the flows of goods and services within the market. Environmentally-extended I-O (EEIO) models include flows of both pollution and consumption of resources and energy. The present paper proposes a conceptual structure for EEIO accounts that builds on the work of Leontief (1970) and Hendrickson, Lave, and Matthews (2006), and then estimates empirical EEIO accounts for the U.S. economy in 1999 and 2011. The empirical accounts provide the first complete characterization of the air pollution damage flows throughout the U.S. economy. Pollution intensity fell from 7 percent of value-added in 1999 to 2 percent in 2011. The utility sector exhibits the highest ratio of pollution damage from value-added production to supply chain damage; this ratio was 22 in 1999 and 54 in 2011. About one-half of all damage comes from intermediate demand, one-third from household consumption, and about 7 percent each from fixed investment and government use of commodities. In both 1999 and 2011, damages would have been about 7 percent higher had all imports been made domestically. The damages from exported goods nearly doubled from 5 percent to almost 10 percent of total pollution damage.
    JEL: C67 Q53 Q56
    Date: 2016–03
  7. By: Soldatos, Gerasimos T.
    Abstract: This paper builds upon the following critique of Islamic economics: (a) Persistence on the literal interpretation of what the theology of Islamic law implies socioeconomically, (b) Rejection subsequently of the core western economic principle of homo economicus-cum-competition, though homo economicus behavior is innermost to absence of riba al-fadl (of exploitation in the goods markets) in the large atleast impersonal markets of our times, (c) Rejection, because of the ahistorical view of the West and hence, of inability to realize that the Cold War European welfare state with a constitution inspired by social solidarity as it derives not politically but religiously from Islamic law, might be worth followed by Islam, and (d) Identification of riba an-nasiya (of exploitation in the financial markets) with zero interest rate charges and not with zero commercial bank seigniorage.
    Keywords: Islamic economics, Deduction vs. theologically induced induction, Homo economicus, Riba (exploitation), Welfare State
    JEL: B41 D63 D64 H11 P48 P51 Z12
    Date: 2015
  8. By: Nifo, Annamaria; Scalera, Domenico; Vecchione, Gaetano
    Abstract: Students’ choices about post-secondary fields of study vary widely across space and time, due to many psychological, social and economic motivations. Regarding these latter, the most important role in steering students’ options has been often ascribed to expected returns from different occupations. This paper emphasizes in particular the link between local institutional quality, the reward structure and students’ preferences. Based on a sample of 80,996 students graduated in Italy in 2004 and 2007, our econometric investigation, controlling for both individual characteristics (gender, residence, family background, high school track) and geographical variables (per capita GDP, industrial specialization), finds that in the choice of the field of study institutional quality definitely matters.
    Keywords: Institutional quality; Fields of study; Regions; Italy
    JEL: B52 I2 I21 P48
    Date: 2016–03–08
  9. By: Gani Ramadani (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia); Nikola Naumovski (National Bank of the Republic of Macedonia)
    Abstract: This paper presents the main findings of a survey on wage and price formation of firms in Macedonia conducted in the first half of 2014. The main objective was to identify some relevant characteristics about the dynamics of wages and prices in Macedonia, clarifying the relationship between them, and to draw some conclusions on firms’ response to various adverse shocks in adjusting labour costs, prices and their various components. The most important conclusions are that: i) wages tend to remain unchanged longer than prices; ii) the most significant factor producing frequent wage adjustment is tenure rather than inflation; iii) time concentration of wage and price changes is significantly lower in Macedonia than in the surveyed EU countries as a result of the considerably low automatic indexation of wages and large share of firms that operate in highly price competitive pressures; iv) downward nominal wage rigidity could be considered relatively high associated with the extent of permanent contracts, and is more important compared to the low downward real wage rigidity; v) there is a weak price-wage link which corresponds with inflation being the least important factor driving wage changes; and vi) in case of adverse shocks firms tend to adjust costs and prices rather than margins and output.
    Keywords: survey data, wage and price setting, wage rigidity, indexation, Macedonia
    JEL: D21 E30 J31
    Date: 2014–09
  10. By: Paolo Giudici (Department of Economics and Management, University of Pavia); Peter Sarlin (Hanken School of Economics); Alessandro Spelta (Department of Economics and Finance, Catholic University Milan)
    Abstract: To capture systemic risk related to network structures, this paper introduces a measure that complements direct exposures with common exposures, as well as compares these to each other. Trying to address the interconnected nature of financial systems, researchers have recently proposed a range of approaches for assessing network structures. Much of the focus is on direct exposures or market-based estimated networks, yet little attention has been given to the multivariate nature of systemic risk, indirect exposures and overlapping portfolios. In this regard, we rely on correlation network models that tap into the multivariate network structure, as a viable means to assess common exposures and complement direct linkages. Using BIS data, we compare correlation networks with direct exposure networks based upon conventional network measures, as well as we provide an approach to aggregate these two components for a more encompassing measure of interconnectedness.
    Keywords: Bank of International Settlements data, Correlation networks, Exposure networks
    JEL: G01 C58 C63
    Date: 2016–03
  11. By: George Mengov (Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski, Faculty of Economics and Business Administration)
    Abstract: Modelling socioeconomic phenomena is a challenge because of the difficulty to relate abstract conceptual structures with complex empirical data. The standard econometric approach takes whatever insight there exists, and simplifies it to fit into regression equations. However, developing economic ideas and empirical models separately may foster a tendency for science to diverge from reality, especially when those ideas originate in another discipline. This paper suggests a stochastic-optimization-based mapping of concepts from any domain on concepts from economics and management science. Such an approach could potentially alleviate the divergence problem by outsourcing part of the researcher’s task to the computational intelligence. By way of example I discuss the opportunities to use the field of mathematical neuroscience as a source of knowledge to be transferred to socioeconomic research.
    Keywords: Economic modelling, socioeconomic fractality, stochastic optimization
    JEL: B4 C63 D7
    Date: 2016–03
  12. By: Makovi, Michael
    Abstract: Discussions of democratic socialism have focused on whether that system is compatible with domestic civil liberties. Less attention has been paid to its foreign policy implications. Despite the widespread acceptance of the democratic peace hypothesis, democratic socialism would be incompatible with peaceful foreign relations. Economic intervention and economic planning – even democratic – cannot be successful without insulating the domestic economy from foreign competition. This implies economic nationalism and autarky. Moreover, democratic socialism is often justified by the notion that the democratic will of the people should be absolutely sovereign. Such a conception of democracy has no place for constitutional limits on power. Such an unlimited democracy would soon prove illiberal and liable to be captured by a demagogic authoritarian dictator, and this would only exacerbate the deleterious foreign policy consequences of economic nationalism. Democratic socialism is therefore incompatible with the cosmopolitan and humanitarian values of democratic socialists.
    Keywords: Hayek; Road to Serfdom; democratic socialism; market socialism; economic democracy; totalitarianism; public choice; government failure; impossibility
    JEL: A12 B24 B25 B51 B53 D70 F0 P10 P20 P30 P50
    Date: 2016–03–25
  13. By: Marta Solaz Alamá (Universitat de València)
    Abstract: Following Koopman, Wang and Wei (2014) and using the data and indicators derived from the international input-output tables of the World Input-Output Database (WIOD), this paper addresses the participation of the Spanish economy and its sectors in GVCs during the period 1995-2011 and its implications for the value-added content of trade. The analysis reveals the increasing integration of the country in GVCs and the heterogeneity between manufacturing and services in their degree of international fragmentation and its contribution to value-added. The importance of sectors heavily dependent on foreign inputs and the relatively low share of exports in GDP limit the capacity of the external sector to stimulate a sustained recovery. Siguiendo la metodología propuesta por Koopman, Wang y Wei (2014) y a partir del banco de datos generado en base a las tablas input-output internacionales de la World Input-Output Database (WIOD), el trabajo analiza la integración de la economía española y sus distintos sectores en las cadenas globales de valor (CGV) a lo largo del periodo 1995-2011, así como las implicaciones de su especialización en la generación de valor añadido. El análisis refleja el avance de su integración en las CGV y la existencia de diferencias notables entre manufacturas y servicios en su grado de fragmentación internacional y aportación al valor añadido. La importancia de sectores muy dependientes de los insumos extranjeros en su estructura productiva, junto con el reducido peso de las exportaciones brutas sobre el PIB, limitan la capacidad del sector exterior de estimular la recuperación de manera sostenida.
    Keywords: exportaciones; valor añadido; fragmentación; globalización; modelo input-output multi-regional (MRIO) exports; value added; fragmentation; multi-regional input-output model (MRIO)
    JEL: F14 F15
    Date: 2016–03
  14. By: Ngigi, Marther W.; Mueller, Ulrike; Birner, Regina
    Abstract: It has been widely acknowledged that the effects of climate change are not gender neutral. However, existing studies on adaptation to climate change mainly focus on a comparison of male-headed and female-headed households. Aiming at a more nuanced gender analysis, this study examines how husbands and wives within the same household perceive climate risks and group-based approaches as coping strategies. The data stem from a unique self-collected and intra-household survey involving 156 couples in rural Kenya, where husbands and wives were interviewed separately. Options for adapting to climate change closely interplay with husbands’ and wives’ roles and responsibilities, social norms, risk perceptions and access to resources. Consequently, a higher percentage of wives adopt crop-related strategies, whereas husbands employ livestock- and agroforestry-related strategies. Besides, there are gender-specific climate information needs, gendered trust of information and preferred channels of information dissemination. Further, it turned out that group-based approaches benefit husbands and wives differently. Group-based approaches provide avenues for diversifying livelihoods and managing risks for wives, while they are pathways for sharing climate information and adaptation options for husbands. Social groups help husbands and wives to enhance their welfare through accumulating vital types of capital such as livestock, durable assets, human, natural, financial and social capital. The findings suggest that designing gender-sensitive policies and institutionalizing gender in climate change adaptation and mitigation frameworks, are vital. Policy interventions that rely on group-based approaches must reflect gender perspectives on the ground in order to amplify men’s and women’s specific abilities to manage risks and improve welfare outcomes in the wake of accelerating climate change.
    Keywords: perceptions, adaptation, group-based approaches, gender, intra-household analysis, Kenya, Consumer/Household Economics, Environmental Economics and Policy, Farm Management, Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety, D13, J16, Q54,
    Date: 2016–03

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